Best-ever chocolate recipes

Jane and Jeremy Strode's cream cheese, chocolate and coffee brownies.
Jane and Jeremy Strode's cream cheese, chocolate and coffee brownies. Photo: Natalie Boog

If you find a good chocolate cake recipe, hang on to it. That's the advice of readers who clipped out Jill Dupleix's Incredibly Wonderful Chocolate Cake recipe when it appeared in Fairfax food publications in 1990 and added it to their baking repertoire.

Based on an Elizabeth David recipe from her 1960 recipe book French Provincial Cooking, it was re-run online in 2012, and is fast becoming one of Good Food's most popular chocolate recipes.

Looking at what dishes you've been clicking on in our database in the past year, we've come up with a list of our 10 favourite chocolate recipes. Brownies, cupcakes, tarts, lamingtons, macaroons and puddings all made the list. Three are published here - the rest can be found at

When we ran Dupleix's recipe again in 2012, reader feedback flowed in. Like a ''chocolate cloud'' commented one person. ''I love this cake. I have been making it for a few years now and it always turns out beautifully,'' wrote another.

It holds a special place in Dupleix's heart too. She has published it in every cookbook she has ever written. And she keeps experimenting with it herself.

''These days, I get very brave with it and pull it out earlier and leave it to rest so it's really squidgy in the centre,'' she says.

Stephanie Alexander's chocolate macaroons.
Stephanie Alexander's chocolate macaroons. Photo: Rebecca Hallas

Of the more-recent contributions to the list, Dan Lepard's Australia Day double-chocolate lamingtons were a standout, intriguing some readers (''The lamingtons were a hit at morning tea'') and horrifying others (''this ain't a real lamington'').

Other favourites show that simplicity and reliability are a priorities, such as Caroline Velik's fast and easy chocolate cake. As is entertaining. Stephanie Alexander's chocolate macaroons with a chocolate ganache filling have proved a hit with readers in the past year.

It's clearly not just cake recipes we're cutting out, bookmarking, adding to favourites and using time and time again.


A good recipe is a good recipe and, for some, made even better with the addition of chocolate.

Jill Dupleix's Incredibly Wonderful Chocolate Cake

''I first came across this cake a million years ago as 'Gateau au chocolat et aux amandes' in Elizabeth David's French Provincial Cookery, which was first published in 1960. It is also known as Reine de saba, or Queen of Sheba cake, especially in the US, where Julia Child introduced it in her groundbreaking TV show The French Chef in 1962.

''It's one of those cakes that's just a pleasure to make and bake, and I love how it turns out slightly differently each time; rising proudly in the oven then sinking and cracking as it cools.''

250g dark, bitter cooking chocolate

150g castor sugar

150g butter

100g ground almonds

5 free-range eggs, separated

Icing sugar

1. Heat oven to 180 degrees. Melt chocolate, sugar and butter in a bowl over a pot of simmering water. Remove from heat, stir to combine, mix in ground almonds then beat in the egg yolks, one at a time.

2. Beat egg whites until stiff and peaked then stir a couple of spoonfuls into the chocolate mixture to lighten it before gently folding in the rest.

3. Turn into a buttered and floured 20-centimetre round tin and bake for 40 to 50 minutes.

4. Leave to cool before removing from tin. Dust with icing sugar to serve.

Jane and Jeremy Strode's cream cheese, chocolate and coffee brownies

''We can't take credit for this wicked combination of cheesecake and chocolate brownie. This is a simplified version of a recipe from The Cook's Book by Jill Norman. It has fewer ingredients and cooking steps but is just as delicious.''

500g cream cheese

460g castor sugar

215g plain flour, sifted

7 eggs

2 yolks

200g dark-chocolate buttons

300g butter

1 tbsp instant coffee, mixed with 1 tsp water to dissolve

200g pecans

1 cup icing sugar, sifted

¼ cup cocoa

1. Line a 30cm x 25cm x 4cm baking tray with baking paper. Preheat oven to 170 degrees. Blend 400 grams of cream cheese with 60 grams of sugar, 15 grams of flour, one egg and the yolks until smooth. Place in a piping bag fitted with a small nozzle and refrigerate.

2. Whisk remaining eggs and 200 grams of sugar until light and fluffy. Gradually whisk in remaining sugar.

3. Melt chocolate and butter together over a saucepan of simmering water, stir to combine. Add coffee to chocolate. Remove from heat and stir through a quarter of the egg mixture. Fold chocolate mix through remaining egg mix. Fold through remaining flour and pecans. Pour mixture into tin.

4. Pipe cream-cheese mixture into brownie batter evenly, close together at regular intervals. Bake for 40 minutes or until puffed up in the middle. Allow to cool on a wire rack.

5. Blend remaining cream cheese, icing sugar and cocoa to make icing. Spread over cooled brownies before cutting into squares.

Stephanie Alexander's chocolate macaroons

''Don't be tempted to double this recipe because speed is essential for spooning the mixture onto the trays. Even with the deftest hand, by the time you shape the last of the mixture it will have slackened, and those macaroons will be flatter than the first ones. And a special tip: filled macaroons are more squidgy and much more delicious after one or two days in an airtight container.''

½ cup ground almonds, sifted

1 cup pure icing sugar, sifted

4 tbsp Dutch-style cocoa, sifted

2 egg whites

¼ tsp cream of tartar

1. Preheat oven to 200 degrees. Prepare two baking sheets lined with baking paper.

2. Mix the sifted ingredients together in a bowl and set aside.

3. Beat the egg whites with the cream of tartar to snowy peaks. Fold a spoonful of the egg whites into the sifted mixture to blend and then fold in the rest of the egg whites quickly but with a light hand.

4. Spoon teaspoonfuls of the mixture onto the paper-lined trays, leaving three centimetres between blobs. Do this as quickly as possible and place trays immediately into the preheated oven. Cook for eight minutes or until the macaroons feel firm on the outside.

5. Wet a tea towel with cold water, wring out and place on the bench. Remove trays from oven and place on the damp cloth for a few minutes. With a spatula, slide the macaroons onto a cooling rack. Allow to cool completely before filling. If not needed immediately, store unfilled macaroons in an airtight container.

Makes 16 pairs

Chocolate ganache filling

75g dark couverture chocolate

1 tsp butter

4 tbsp cream

1. Break chocolate into small pieces and pulverise in the food processor into a powder.

2. Bring cream and butter to the boil in a pan.

3. With motor running, pour the boiling cream mixture onto the chocolate in a steady stream. Process until smooth. Refrigerate until just cold, and then beat in an electric mixer until soft peaks form. Use straight away.

4. Excess ganache will become too stiff to spread. Allow it to return to room temperature and then re-beat for a few minutes to regain spreadable consistency.

Do you have a favourite chocolate recipe from Good Food (formerly Good Living) or Epicure over the years? Jump on the comments and let us know.